Sugar is delicious and eating it in small amounts can be quite harmless. Unfortunately, added sugar is everywhere, and it’s hard not to consume large amounts of it on a regular basis.
“Most people in the US eat too much sugar, most of it added, and most people would be better off reducing their sugar intake,” he says. Dana Ellis Hunnes, PhD, MPH, RD senior clinical dietitian at UCLA Medical Center, assistant professor at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, and author of Recipe for survival. “By eating a complete and less processed diet, one can achieve this goal of eating much less sugar.”
And while everyone can benefit from reducing their sugar intake, there are certain types of people who may want to monitor their intake of added sugar on a regular basis. Read on to see if you’re one of those people who needs to cut back on sweet things, and for more information, don’t miss the 5 Worst Eating Habits for Sugar Cravings, Says a Dietitian.
Doctors may tell people with diabetes to limit their intake of added sugar.
“While this is true for type and type 2 diabetics, those with type 2 diabetes can control their glucose through diet more easily than those with type 1 diabetes. Reducing sugar intake can help with weight loss, which in turn will help regulate your blood sugar and reverse your type 2 diagnosis,” says Trista Best, MPH, RD, LDa registered dietitian at Balance One Supplements.
High blood pressure is an extremely common problem affecting Americans, and diet plays an important role in controlling blood pressure levels. Because of this, people with high blood pressure may want to control the amount of sugar they eat on a daily basis.
According to a 2019 study published in nutrients, people with hypertension (high blood pressure) can lower their blood pressure by reducing sugar intake. This study also found that replacing added sugar with natural sugar sources like fruit can also help.
People with a family history of heart disease should also watch their sugar intake. “Consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages can contribute to weight gain and is associated with an increased risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes,” he says. Janet Coleman, Dr.a registered dietitian with The Consumer Mag. “Sugary drinks contain calories without providing any nutrients, so they need to be replaced with other nutrient-dense foods. For example, people can replace calories from sugary drinks by eating more fruits and vegetables.” or drinking unsweetened coffee or tea instead of soda.
Reducing sugar intake is not the solution to living with depression or anxiety, but it can help with some of the symptoms. If you are experiencing something like this, you may want to talk to a professional for help.
“People with anxiety and/or depression, or those at risk for these conditions, should lower their sugar intake. Eating a lot of added sugars can lead to chronic inflammation. And chronic inflammation is linked to symptoms of depression and anxiety.” Focus instead on increasing your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains,” says registered dietitian Lindsay Delk, RDN.
At the end of the day, many Americans eat too much added sugar, so most people in this general population could benefit from reducing their intake.
“Most people should reduce their sugar intake, and the World Health Organization (WHO) states that adults and children should focus on reducing their sugar intake as much as possible. This is due to the nutritional composition of foods high in sugar. They’re mostly empty calories that provide about 10% of your daily calorie intake and, at the same time, don’t provide a significant source of vitamins or minerals,” says Best.